Sainsbury’s extends Healthy Start top-up scheme to Northern Ireland

Sainsbury’s extends Healthy Start top-up scheme to Northern Ireland

For the first time, Sainsbury’s is extending its £2 top-up coupons, which accompany the government-funded NHS Healthy Start scheme to Northern Ireland and Wales.

The coupon is eligible when purchasing fresh, frozen and tinned fruit and vegetables, and will help families access affordable and nutritious food.

The major retailer said the move comes as the cost of living continues to rise and said the coupon extension would “help feed an additional 47,000 pregnant women and children over the coming months”.

The NHS Healthy Start scheme helps to encourage a healthy diet for pregnant women, babies and young children under the age of four from low-income households.

NI customers who use a Healthy Start card when shopping at Sainsbury’s will now automatically receive a printed coupon worth £2 every week until Tuesday 11th April next year.

The Healthy Start cards, which are provided by the government to low-income families, provide pregnant women or families with a child between the age of one and four years old with £4.25 a week to use when purchasing milk, fruit or vegetables. Families with a child under the age of one will receive £8.50 each week.

Sainsbury’s top-up means that families that use their Healthy Start card each week in a Sainsbury’s superstore could receive either £6.25 or £10.50 worth of healthy and nutritious food per week. Sainsbury’s first introduced the £2 top-up coupon in 2021, helping families during February half term and beyond. The coupon was then reintroduced last Christmas to provide extra help to those struggling over the festive period.